2022 & 2023
SMALL SHIP CRUISE
Elite Galapagos Cruise 7N B
This lonely archipelago of 18 islands and more than 100 tiny islets, located 600 miles off the coast of Ecuador in the Pacific Ocean, was named a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1978. Due to its proximity to the equator, volcanic activity, and the influence of three ocean currents (Humboldt, Panama, and Cromwell), the region developed distinctive land and marine ecosystems over four million years.
The steady migration of the Nazca tectonic plate over many ages resulted in generations of volcanic eruptions that formed the Galapagos Islands. These days, every island has a unique landscape, ranging from mountainous regions dotted with shield volcanoes and lava fields to dry areas populated by endemic cacti to stunning white-sand beaches and turquoise oceans. The world’s richest marine biosphere reserve is the group of islands known as the Galapagos.
The extraordinary abundance of indigenous plant and animal species found nowhere else in the world is what truly distinguishes the Galapagos. The Galapagos Islands are home to about 80% of terrestrial birds and mammals, over 90% of reptiles, more than 30% of plants, and roughly 20% of marine species.
WHAT MAKES THIS TRIP EXTRAORDINARY
- Dynamic Landscapes
- Guided Hiking Adventures
- Intimate Wildlife Encounters
- Tender rides
- Marine adventures
- Snorkeling & Diving
- Kayaking and Paddle Boarding
If you have any questions, please let us know. We are here to help you!
Itinerary in Brief
AM: San Cristobal Airport
You will be transferred to the vessel upon arrival at San Cristobal airport.
PM: David Rodriguez Breeding Center
The history and evolution of the giant tortoise are explained during a tour of the David Rodriguez Breeding Center, which also illustrates why preserving these fantastic animals’ future is so important.
Baby tortoises are being raised in semi-natural settings on the reserve’s trails. This is a beautiful example of the locals’ dedication to protecting the biodiversity that makes the Galapagos Islands unique.
AM: Española – Suarez Point
Suarez Point is teeming with wildlife, and the circular walking track is the greatest way to explore it. During this enjoyable stroll, you will pass vast Nazca colonies, blue-footed, and mockingbird nests. Along with the red and green marine iguanas, Espaola Island is home to the stunning waved albatross, which may be seen majestically flinging itself out across the ocean from the cliffs.
A geological highlight is a group of blow holes that may discharge water 25 meters into the air and make for amazing pictures.
PM: Gardner Bay Ans Osborn Islets
While kayaking or paddle boarding is an excellent opportunity to watch the numerous waved albatross that utilize this beach as a nesting site, Gardner Bay’s immaculate white sand beach is lined with sea lions. It makes for the ideal place to unwind.
You may snorkel with baby sea lions and a variety of colorful tropical fish and corals in the Gardner and Osborn Islets, which are easily accessible by panga.
AM: Floreana – Cormorant Point / Champion islet
Two distinct beaches can be found at Cormorant Point: one with pristine white sand (often referred to as «Flour Beach») made from crushed coral, and the other with green-tinted sand because of the high concentration of olivine crystals.
One of the greatest populations of Galapagos flamingos and other shorebirds like stilts, white-cheeked pintails, and large-billed flycatchers frequent the saltwater lagoon, making it a must-see.
A panga ride offers an excellent option for snorkeling to Champion Islet, an extinct shield volcano renowned for having a large variety of fish.
PM: Post Office Bay / The Baroness’ Lookout
An artificial location called Post Office Bay provides information about a fascinating mailing custom that was started by British whalers in the 18th century and is still used today. You may go kayaking or snorkeling on this beach, and you can even enter a lava tube and stroll through it.
Afterward, take a panga ride to the Baroness’ Lookout. This volcanic rock structure is named for an Australian baroness who visited the island in the 1930s and is thought to have vanished without a trace. A short route takes you to a fantastic vantage point with expansive views of the mangroves and shores nearby.
AM: Mosquera Islet
Between Baltra and North Seymour islands is the small, sandy Mosquera islet. The stunning surroundings can be explored on foot without restriction due to the lack of a set track. Here, you will come across many sea lions, shorebirds, and the spectacular Sally Lightfoot crabs that cling to the black rocks.
It’s a great place for snorkeling and spotting various marine life, including sharks, turtles, and rays, thanks to the abundance of coral reefs.
PM: Charles Darwin Research Station
The Charles Darwin Research Station offers a fantastic opportunity to learn about the crucial work to protect the archipelago’s ecosystems.
This includes a significant breeding operation for Galapagos tortoises, whose population has been declining since the 1970s.
Bring your camera along for some up-close shots of these fascinating big reptiles because they are very accustomed to people.
AM: Genovesa – Prince Philip’s Steps / El Barranco
A steep staircase called El Barranco, also known as Prince Philip’s Steps, will take you past a Nazca and red-footed booby colony and up to a plateau of dried lava. Visitors are frequently treated to sights of storm petrels launching out over the ocean as they continue through the sparse Palo Santo forest and look out over the plain.
You have a decent chance of spotting the rare Galapagos fur seals snuggled on the rocks by taking a panga ride or kayaking or paddleboarding along the edge of the cliffs and snorkeling is a terrific activity if you want to go swimming with different kinds of sharks.
PM: Genovesa – Darwin Bay
A tiny stretch of sand and coral beach in Darwin Bay is ideal for snorkeling, kayaking, or paddle boarding in quiet, protected waters with hammerhead sharks, rays, and an abundance of colorful reef species. The Nazca and red-footed boobies, swallow-tailed gulls, and other land bird species can be found in the mangroves and tidal lagoon along the shore.
The walk ends at a viewpoint with an incredible view of the cliffs and the bay below.
AM: Santiago – Espumilla Beach / Buccaneer Cove
Espumilla beach, a stunning stretch of white sand on Santiago island’s northern coast, gets its name from the foam trails that the waves’ lapping creates that resembles meringue. As a result of the abundance of Sally Lightfoot crabs in this area, hawks, herons, and pelicans are frequently spotted.
In this picturesque setting, you can kayak, paddle board, or snorkel among various fish species, including octopus, eels, and sharks. Buccaneer Cove has a fascinating history as a place where sailors, buccaneers, and whalers frequently anchored their ships in search of food and water.
It has recently grown in importance as a turtle nesting location and is also well-liked by sea lions. An interesting perspective of the unique rock formations that serve as good ledges for boobies, pelicans, and gulls may be seen from a panga ride along the eroding beach.
PM: Egas Port
The spectacular black sand beach at Egas Port, which was formerly the location of a salt mine, is now a great place for snorkeling and viewing shorebirds, Sally Lightfoot crabs, and marine iguanas.
Wide paths inland take you through tidal pools and rugged volcanic outcrops known as grottoes, where you might see fur seals relaxing in the shade.
AM: Santa Cruz – Bachas Beach
You will visit Kicker Rock in the morning. An iconic feature of the Galapagos, Kicker Rock, was created over time by the erosion of the volcano’s extinct cone. Additionally, when the ship navigates around the rock formation, blue-footed boobies, frigatebirds, and sea lions are frequently perched on the ledges above. This provides an excellent sight for taking beautiful images.
You will proceed to Witch Hill after seeing Kicker Rock. Witch Hill has a beautiful white sand beach reachable by panga and offers a great vantage point for visiting Kicker Rock in the island’s south. The hill is an eroded tuff cone, and the calm waters at its base make for an excellent snorkeling location.
Meanwhile, there are opportunities to see various coastal birds, finches, and mockingbirds on a walk along the beach or on one of the inland routes.
The largest hike on San Cristobal is the Giant Tortoise Reserve, which you will visit after lunch. The route is around 5 kilometers long and may be pretty warm.
This is a great location to see giant tortoises in their natural environment. Six thousand gigantic tortoises live at San Cristobal; hundreds of them can be spotted alongside other endemic species like lava lizards and mockingbirds on a good day.
The opportunity to see sea turtles and tintoreras (white-tipped reef sharks) makes snorkeling a fantastic activity and a great chance to see Sea turtles nest on the sand.
PM: Twin craters and the Highlands of Santa Cruz
The remains of a rusty boat assumed to have been abandoned by the Americans during World War I, may be seen on Bachas Beach, a gorgeous white sand beach. If you go snorkeling there, you might share the water with these magnificent animals because it is a favorite turtle breeding location.
Sally Lightfoot, hermit crabs, and stunning pink flamingos that visit the saline water lagoon behind are also abundant on the beach.
AM: Lobos Island, off San Cristobal
Lobos Island, which can be reached by panga, is named for the sea lion herds that have settled there.
It is a rare opportunity to witness these curious and lively animals up close while snorkeling in the quiet, clear water, and it is typical to be joined by green turtles and rays as well.
There is a route inland where you can expect to see frigates and blue-footed boobies’ nesting locations.
Transfer to San Cristobal Airport for your flight back home.
Elite – The Newest Luxury Galapagos Cruise
The Elite’s design provides greater stability and more room for everything on board, including social rooms and gilded suites. The spacious, partially covered sky deck, the charming bar-salon, and the outdoor eating area are all enjoyed by visitors of all ages.
The Galapagos Elite has cutting-edge navigational systems and safety gear because, as with all Galapagos luxury experiences, dependability and safety are paramount.
All Golden Suites onboard the Galapagos Elite are spacious, comfortable, and well–appointed: the perfect place to relax and recharge after a day spent exploring the islands. Each suite has an ocean view and an outdoor balcony, as well as a rainforest–style showers in a private bathroom.
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